For my Girls Who Grill series, I knew I had to include Shannon Morgan. She’s an amazing cook, a Big Green Egger, a female in the male dominated grilling space, and a vegetarian — I know that we can all use more veggie forward dishes to try on the grill! We met through Instagram (the power of social media!) and we even got to meet in person, as she lives only 40 minutes away from me in Southwest Florida!
I’m so glad we have the chance to feature Shannon, including the story of how she accidentally discovered grilling, crazy vegetarian dishes like carrot hot dogs, why she loves the Big Green Egg so much, and the recipe for her amazing smoked hummus for us to try at home.
“I am an avid home cook, with a passion for grilling,” she said “I am fortunate to have a husband that not only supports all my crazy ideas, but also enjoys being my taste-tester. He loves most foods, which makes it easy to test my grilling experiments on him. My family is everything to me.”
What kind of cuisine did you grow up eating?
I am a vegetarian now, but I grew up on steak, fried chicken and Hamburger Helper. My dad pulled out the grill every Saturday for “steak night,” even during the freezing Midwest winters. I have such great memories of my dad and his grill.
How did you learn to grill?
It was trial by fire. I half-jokingly volunteered to cook at a local Egg Fest in March of 2019, but only if I could grill vegetarian dishes. Much to my surprise, they took me up on that offer. After winning over hungry attendees during a long, hot day of grilling carrot hotdogs (yep, carrots!) covered in a vegan chili cheese sauce, I was hooked on Big Green Egg cooking. A week later, I brought home my first EGG and my passion for grilling on the Big Green Egg has only continued to grow over the years.
Were you ever intimidated by grilling?
Not really. I approach grilling like I do with everything in life: I do my research and then go for it. I always tell myself: What is the worst that could happen? I burn dinner and we end up having cereal instead.
What grills do you cook on regularly?
I am Big Green Egg all the way!! Yes, you can grill and smoke some amazing meats on the Egg, but I also love to show how you can make pizzas, lasagna, grilled veggies, fresh bread, desserts, and so much more on the grill. Show me your favorite dish, and I bet I can figure out how to make it on an Egg.
What would you say is a dish you’re most famous for grilling?
My carrot hot dogs or any number of wok dishes made on the Egg. Tune in to my wok cooks on Instagram Live, where I always test new dishes on the Big Green Egg wok, many times with a guest chef.
What has been your proudest moment in grilling?
It was the moment that BGE asked me to be on Team Green. I’m a vegetarian griller and I was invited join the ambassador team of the best grill company in the world. Wow! I could have never imagined this is where my passion would lead me.
What advice would you give other women who want to learn to grill?
Follow your passion and just go for it. Social media is full of terrific grillers. Many of them are women who are beyond supportive and are always happy to share their knowledge—and have some fun! Here are a handful of Instagram accounts you should check out for inspiration: @SeattleButchersWife, @MaddieandKiki, @BeachGirlGrills, @FosterFeast and @ScaleandTailor.
What is on your list of dishes you want to try on the grill?
I am always coming up with new ways to cook traditional foods on the grill. There is nothing like the flavor that grilling adds to just about any dish. Why cook inside when you can fire up the grill and be outside?
What is on your grilling “bucket list?”
I can’t wait to attend and cook at Eggtoberfest in Atlanta one day. To be surrounded by such a great community of egg enthusiasts would be awesome.
What’s on your grilling gear wish list?
I am well stocked, thanks to BGE.
What are some of your non-grilling hobbies?
I love cycling, which is easy to do year-round in sunny Florida. I also enjoy traveling in the states and abroad. Travel is such a great way to experience new people, cultures and their amazing food. A few years ago, The Hubs and I did a 10-day-long vegetarian food tour of Thailand that was amazing.
Check out our other interviews with Girls Who Grill!